Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close
News Flash: Two Oscar Nominations!
Great news! Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close has just received two Oscar nominations, one for Best Picture, and the other for Max Von Sydow as Best Supporting Actor. Now I can't wait for the Academy Awards ceremony (The Oscars) on Sunday, February 26, 2012!
I'm extremely excited and incredibly nervous!
I've just learned that they have made my favourite book, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer, into a movie. Not only that, but it stars two of my favourite actors, Tom Hanks and Sandra Bullock. It previews in December and has its full cinematic release in North America in January - I can't wait!
I'm excited because I just love this book - it is one of the few that I've actually read twice - it's that good.
I'm nervous because I badly want the world to hear this story, but I'm worried that it might not translate to the silver screen. With such a great cast and compelling story, I probably shouldn't worry. There are some great examples of books that have been made into fantastic movies, my all-time favourite being Shoeless Joe by W.P. Kinsella becoming 'Field of Dreams' with Kevin Costner.
If you've seen the movie, let me know what you think by answering my poll below.
What's it all about?
This story is narrated through the eyes of nine-year-old Oskar Schell who is struggling with the tragic loss of his father who was working in the twin towers on 9/11. Haunted by a series of unanswered voice messages left by his father on that fateful morning, Oskar finds a key in his father's belongings and sets off on a mission around New York to locate the lock and unlock the secret. During his search, he meets a series of interesting characters but none are more compelling than his grandmother and estranged grandfather, played by actor Max Von Sydow who has just received an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor.
As the story progresses, we learn the heart-breaking story of his grandparents' relationship and how his grandfather gradually loses his ability to speak, losing one word at a time until he can no longer talk at all. Finally he communicates simply by writing one word on each hand: 'Yes' and 'No'.
The author uses a lot of interesting devices in this book, including photographs and interesting type layouts which really have to be seen to be appreciated. The writing is beautiful and the story compelling.
How does it end? What does the key unlock? Well, you'll have to read the book or watch the movie to find out. All I can say is that, just like life, it is the journey that is most important, not the destination!
Incidentally, if you like this book as much as I do, you'll be interested to know about another of my favourite books. Called 'The History of Love' by Nicole Krauss, it is a love story that bears a striking similarity in many respects to 'Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close'. Although set in an entirely different time and place, I was so struck by this similarity that I did some research and was surprised to discover that Mr. Foer and Ms. Krauss are indeed a couple!
If you have read 'Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close', or watched the movie, please answer my poll, I'd love to know your reaction.